If you are pursing British immigration through a UK Start up visa, you must fulfill a number of requirements in order to be eligible. Among requirements relating to age, finances, and knowledge of English language, applicants must also obtain an endorsement from an officially-sanctioned endorsing body. The list of authorised endorsing bodies for the UK Start-up visa includes various business and higher education bodies. Today’s blog presents the list of authorised endorsing bodies for the UK Start-up visa below (including both the Legacy and Higher education endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa), as well as an overview of the topic of how to get endorsed. In addition, today’s blog contains the answers to some frequently asked questions, including “What is visa endorsement?”, and “How to get a UK Start-up visa endorsement?”, and “What is a Business endorsing bodies?”. 

What is visa endorsement?

  • Visa endorsements are offered by various businesses and higher education entities on the authorised endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa list; obtaining a visa endorsement is a basic requirement of the Start-up visa. 
  • A visa endorsement is granted or issued by a business, company or higher education institute to an applicant’s start-up (in effect, the endorsing body is “endorsing” or providing support to the applicant’s idea for a start-up, which the applicant needs in order to obtain his or her Start up visa. In exchange for having received an endorsement, the applicant will abide by the requirements established by the endorsing entity. 
  • Different visa endorsers have different eligibility standards and requirements. For example, “Blue Orchid Enterprise Solutions Inc” (this and all subsequently-mentioned business are found on the below list) exclusively accepts applicants who apply from within the country, and who commit to participating in company-run workshops and training programs, for a fee. 
  • Some endorsing bodies, like “Britbots” will receive applications at any time of the year, while others, like Blue Orchid, only began considering endorsement requests in February of this year. 
  • Some endorsing bodies, like “Consilium Consulting,” will only endorse business based in a particular country or region (Consilium exclusively considers Wales-based applicants), while others, like DRS Business Solutions, endorse businesses throughout the UK. 
  • Please note that your ongoing stay in the UK is predicated, in part, by your visa endorsement. In the event that your endorsing body declines to continue to endorse you, you must obtain a fresh endorsement (i.e. apply for and receive an endorsement from another company on the below list prior to the expiry of your present Start-up visa) in order to legally remain and work in the country. 

How to get a UK Start-up visa endorsement

  • How to get endorsed varies depending on whether you seek an endorsement from a higher education body or a business entity, and other factors, including where your company is based, and its specific nature. 
  • Different endorsing bodies have different application processes. You can click on the below businesses/higher education institutes to find out more about their specific processes for applying. 
  • It is important that you select the endorsement body that is best suited to your start up’s particular needs. Contact us directly for help selecting an endorsing body that is right for you. Once you are certain of which entity you are applying from, you can get a start-up visa endorsement from one of the endorsing bodies on the below list. 

What is a business endorsing bodies?

  • A business endorsing body is a UK-based company or business that extends endorsements to eligible Start-up visa candidates. 
  • Unlike higher education endorsing bodies, the businesses on the below list do not generally require that those seeking endorsements from them have a previous relationship with them as a pre-requisite for applying.
  • “Business endorsing bodies” are therefore different from “higher education endorsing bodies” in this respect, in that the latter category generally only accepts endorsements from students and alumni. 

Higher education endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa

  • A higher education endorsing body is a British educational institution (such as a university or college) that provides endorsements for Start-up visa applicants. 
  • A “higher education endorsing body” is therefore different from a “business endorsing body,” in that it is a school rather than a profit-generating entity. 
  • Unlike businesses, higher education endorsing bodies mainly exclusively endorse applicants who have a current or prior affiliation with the respective university. 
  • For example, both “City University of London” and “Bath Spa University” do not accept applications from anyone who was not previously a student or recent alumni of the schools.     
  • Many current students or graduate of one of the universitas on the below list find it easiest to pursue an endorsement through the school. However, if you are neither a current student nor graduate of one of the listed education endorsing bodies, you will likely have to pursue endorsement through a business entity. 

Legacy endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa

  • Legacy endorsing bodies are those which are no longer issuing endorsements to Start up visa holders, but which continue uphold their previously-endorsed Start-up visa commitments. 
  • If you have not yet obtained an endorsement for your Start up-visa idea, you can effectively ignore this category of endorsing bodies, as they are not legally allowed to endorse new start-ups.   

List of authorised endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa: Businesses

List of authorised endorsing bodies for UK Start-up visa: Higher education endorsing bodies

Legacy endorsing bodies for UK Start-up Visa

  • Natwest Entrepreneur Accelerator                                                                                           
  • Royal Bank of Scotland Entrepreneur Accelerator                                                                       
  • Ulster Bank Accelerator
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